After a resounding 8-0 win over Huntly last Wednesday Formartine returned to action against Inverurie Locos at the weekend.
In the 6th minute, Souter was booked for a tackle on United pivot, Shane Jamieson and the after-effects of the bone-crunching stayed with the hardy defender for a fair wee while after.
Seven minutes later Formartine, who had posed some threat in wide areas, came close to opening the scoring after a swift foray down the left by Barbour took him clear of Rennie with the space from which to hit a loopy cross into the far side of the goalmouth where it took the combined efforts of Jeffrey and Keeper Mathieson to prevent the predatory Wood from turning the ball into the net.
In the 19th minute a lump up the park by Anderson reached Charles Worth who made off through the inside right channel and got past Jamieson and between Crawford and Dingwall to deliver a very precise shot beyond the right hand of the rapidly advancing Reid and into the back of the net from about 15 yards out.
United tried to respond immediately and Masson forced himself on the home rearguard within a minute.
He got a sniff off goal from about 25 yards out but his finish lacked composure and the ball skited high and wide.
Formartine continued to press and although having probably the better of possession, struggled to convert it into penetration. They had a certain territorial advantage but with Locos deploying two banks of four and prepared when needed to pull the forward one to supplement the rearguard, United struggled to threaten the keeper.
Thus far, there had not been a lot between the two - Locos had the only goal but did not mount and sustain the level of pressure that suggested that they were likely to get another while Formartine despite shading things in terms of possession and territory, had few shots on target.
It took until the 54th minute for the United goal to arrive.
A long ball from the Reid was quickly nudged forward left by Wood to Barbour. Souter, Crisp and Rennie were all on him but the wee forward spun off the first before wrong footing the other two.
By this stage he was about three or yards in from the goal line and roughly in line with the left side of the box from where he whipped in a vicious low drive beyond Mathieson at the near post and into the net near the far one.
A desparing goal mouth lunge at the ball by Jeffrey was knocked back into the net by Anderson who was keen to claim the goal but the consensus was that it was really Barbour’s and that the ball had crossed the line before Jeffrey got his boot to it.
The second in the 56th minute came from a slightly more patterned build up down the left where sub Smith (on for Young) had worked a couple of overlaps before taking a free a few yards shy of the left corner of the box.
He hoisted the ball into the maelstrom surrounding the back post where a perfectly timed run by the immaculate Rodger met the ball to slam it home from close range.
This quickfire one-two knocked the stuffing out of Locos whose attempts at chasing the game thereafter looked increasingly forlorn. Formartine were now in charge and their pressure and possession continued.
Although it was probably not that much more than it had been before the goals it was certainly enough to ensure that their possession of the points was sealed.
The downside was congestion at the Locos end.
That meant shots on goal were infrequent but rebounds from goal directed attempts were commonplace.
Mostly it was a bit of a bourrach round the bottom goalmouth and from the perspective of damage limitation it suited Locos however, for Formartine it helped ensure victory.